Rare Plants That Are Red

Red plants are, for the most part, quite rare. Plants such as the Japanese maple command very high prices and become the show piece of the garden. There are, however, some extraordinarily rare red specimens in the world, usually growing in isolated pockets of rainforests and other tropical environments. You won't find these red plants growing in your neighbor's yard.

Cyrtostachys lakka

Also known as the red sealing wax palm, this plant sports a flaming red trunk. A native of the lowland rainforests and coastal swamps of Malaysia, it is quite difficult to grow anywhere else. The red sealing wax palm's seeds can take up to one year to germinate, if they germinate at all. The plant also requires constant warmth, bright light and a constant, high degree of humidity. This is one rare palm tree, with a recent specimen found on sale at a palm show for $1,000.

Rafflesia arnoldii

No stems, leaves or roots, the Rafflesia arnoldii leads a parasitic existence, and is still classified as a vascular plant. Known as the world's largest flower, with five blood-red petals, it can grow to 39 inches in diameter and weigh 22 pounds. Rafflesia arnoldii is native to the rainforests of Borneo and Indonesia. In fact, despite the fact that the flower smells like rotting flesh, it is the official flower of Indonesia. Scientists aren't sure how many Rafflesia species remain on earth; many of them are assumed to be near extinction. The difficulty of reproducing the plant's growth habit makes cultivation nearly impossible.

Nepenthes northiana

Nepenthes is a genus of tropical pitcher plants. These are carnivorous plants that use color and odor to attract their prey, luring them into their basket-like leaves. Nepenthis northiana is a very rare member of the genus, found only in Sarawak, Borneo. A brilliant red pitcher is the hallmark of this plant. The World Conservation Monitoring Center has listed this plant as endangered.

Keywords: rare plants that are red, red plants, tropical plants

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing.